HAVANA TIMES — A colleague of mine invited me to her 50th birthday party. It was in held at a rented beach house so it had a pool, a bar and a beautifully landscaped garden.
About twenty people attended, enjoying conversation out on the patio with background sounds of excellent music. We adults savored the good drinks while the kids all took a dip in the pool.
At around three in the afternoon, after a few appetizers and fruit cocktails, we all proceeded to the table. As we were sitting down, the birthday girl came over and handed each of us a ticket.
She then announced that the chairs matched the tickets, meaning that each one was numbered and that each of us should sit according to their number.
The unexpected situation amazed many of the guests. It reminded me of my wife, who always used that technique in remembering the tastes, habits, preferences of her friends, especially if they weren’t expecting it and she was able to produce something like what happened there.
Meanwhile, someone took care of serving the roast chicken, pork chops, Moorish rice, plantain tostones and salad. There were some desserts (Dobosh torts and torrejas), and finally coffee.
In an hour we all consumed delicacies that are rarely available. At one end of the table, the birthday girl stood up and said:
“I feel very good… And you all of you, do you feel good?”
“Yes,” replied the majority.
As my colleague is always upbeat, she continued the dialogue saying:
“I’ve always wanted to eat in harmony with all those around me. So I’m very happy. This is the first time I’ve ever brought together most of my friends – the ones missing have left the country.
“Those of you here now will be known as members of the club of my friends, because everything around us points to our enjoyment, from the smiles on each your faces to the coffee that we’re about to share.
“Truly, this is a wonderful party. But why do we have to wait for the 50th if day-to-day life is a celebration.”